1. Plan your trip in advance there are substantial discounts for airlines, hotels and cruise lines for booking well in advance. Part of planning in advance includes looking online for deals to your favorite destinations, sign up for newsletters etc… to reputable sites. Disney, SmartVegas, and Carnival send us updates on deals all the time.
2. When time and distance permit travel by car, the cost is substantially less than flying. When traveling by car you do not have to deal with the TSA, baggage cost are not an issue, limits on toiletries are not an issue and your luggage does not go missing or get destroyed.
3. Save money for your trip, set aside a few dollars every month until you have enough to take your trip. All the change we collect during the year goes into our travel fund. This is not enough to pay for a major trip, but it certainly helps with gas and food. Also, as we stated in a previous post if a second job can be used to fund a trip that always helps.
4. Always assume that there will be hidden cost when traveling. A vacation is much like tile or hardwood flooring if your house needs 400 square feet of tile you would probably buy 450 square feet of tile. We have been to Disney World, Las Vegas, Los Angeles, Maui, Hilton Head, New Orleans and on a Caribbean Cruise. The only time our budget was even close was on the Cruise. When traveling you will eat more extravagantly than you expect to, you will buy more trinkets than you intend to, you will go to shows and events not on your schedule and you will upgrade despite knowing better. I feel that adding twenty percent to your expected budget is not at all over doing it for a big trip. Travel should only be done after you have established an emergency fund and paid of all major debt excluding your home. Travel with the confidence that when the trip is over the fun memories and enjoyment will come home with you instead of the bill.